According to data released this week by Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), more than 3.8 million Russians have left the country in the first three months of 2022.
Between January and March, in total, 3,880,679 Russians travelled for employment, business, tourism, and personal reasons.
After Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, there was a considerable increase in arrivals in former Soviet nations. Russians fleeing the battle were joined by those fleeing rumours of border closures, martial law, and mass mobilization, which have yet to materialize in the 72-day conflict.
As of now, it is not yet unknown how many of these Russians have since returned to their home country.
A nearly fivefold increase was also witnessed in Tajikistan, where 40,054 Russians arrived this January-March, as compared with 8,857 in January-March 2021.
In comparison to the previous year, Estonia had a fourfold increase (125,426). (29,364). Latvia (25,568 people compared to 13,521) and Lithuania (48,197 people compared to 41,838) also had minor gains.
Over the same period last year, 134,129 Russians arrived in Armenia, up from 44,586 the year before.
The agency reported a similar threefold jump for arrivals in Uzbekistan at 53,084 this year compared with 15,206 in 2021.
The number of Russians arriving in Kazakhstan two folded to 204,947 in January-March 2022 from 122,330.
Russians visiting war-torn Ukraine increased slightly, according to the FSB, to 328,435, up from 316,286 in January-March 2021.
Egypt (351,926), Turkey (363,849), and the United Arab Emirates (263,519) were popular tourist destinations for Russians who did not participate in the Western airspace restrictions.
Abkhazia (744,548), which is internationally acknowledged as part of Georgia, had the greatest number of incoming Russians.
According to Perviy Otdel, a human rights organisation, FSB operatives have begun asking relatives of Russians who have departed the country to convince the new emigrants to return.